Watch: New bookshop opens this weekend

St Pauls Bookshop opens at St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh (beside John Lewis) this Saturday afternoon.

Fr Baji, Fr Shinto and Bookshop Manager Emma look forward to welcoming you! Watch the video below or on YouTube. Read more here.

VACANCY: Administrator (support team)

The Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh is seeking to appoint an Administrator.

The role involves providing support to the Property Director and general administrative support within the Archdiocesan offices in Edinburgh.

The successful candidate will have strong communication skills, good attention to detail and efficient IT skills, especially in Excel.

They will be proactive, flexible and have the ability to prioritise and organise their work, while also supporting other team members as required. Experience or a qualification in Health and Safety would be beneficial.

To apply, please send your CV and a cover letter detailing how your skills and experience make you suitable for this role to by Friday 2 December

Interviews are scheduled to take place on Monday 12 December. Previous applicants need not apply.

Job details

Administrator (Support Team).

Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Road, Edinburgh, EH9 1BB.

Full time, 35 hours a week, Mon- Fri

£21,000 FTE

Reports to                 
Office Manager with strong links to the Director of Property.

Main purpose and scope of role
To work as part of the Curia Support team with a focus on supporting the Property Director. Main areas of work are Insurance, Health and Safety and generic administrative work for the Curia.

Key relationships:

Key responsibilities 1 (Property)
Insurance claims and renewals.

Health & Safety

Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme (Topmark)
(20% grants for invoices for maintenance and repairs on listed churches.)

Gillis Building

Key Responsibilities 2 (Support Team)
Working with Office Manager and Support Team as required.


Skills & Ability

WATCH: Highlights from Venerable Margaret Sinclair Pilgrimage

Here are highlights from the wonderful Pilgrimage in honour of Venerable Margaret Sinclair, which took place at St Patrick's, in the Cowgate, Edinburgh.

Pray for her intercession and let's make her Scotland's next blessed!

Centenary celebrations at Holy Cross!

Congratulations to Holy Cross Parish in Edinburgh which is celebrating its centenary!

Archbishop Cushley recently joined parishioners for a Centenary Mass at the church, based in the Trinity area of the city, and passed on his congratulations.

From left: Canon James Tracey, Fr Peter Kelly, Archbishop Cushley, Mgr Gerry Hand and Fr Eddie McGhee (pic: Maciek Samulski).

He was joined by parish priest Mgr Gerry Hand, Fr Jamie McMorrin, Canon James Tracey, Fr Peter Kelly and Fr Eddie McGhee of Galloway Diocese.

Parishioners take a trip down memory lane with a gallery of pics from the past (pic: Maciek Samulski).

Mgr Hand said: "We celebrated the Centenary Mass with great joy. It was also a chance to encourage people to return to Mass and deepen that sense of community of faith.

"We go forward now ready to be more committed to the Centenary year and ready to go into the second hundred years hopeful and believing in the future of the parish."

Join us for Venerable Margaret Sinclair Pilgrimage

The Venerable Margaret Sinclair Pilgrimage takes place on Sunday 18 September at St Patrick's Church in The Cowgate, Edinburgh.

It will be a time of prayer, stillness and reflection.

Join us from 2pm (schedule below). Watch the promo video below or on YouTube (video by Sancta Familia Media).


2:00pm: Rosary

2:20pm: Confession, Adoration, Benediction

3:15pm: Talk by Dr John Watts

3:30pm: Free time

4:30pm: Holy Mass (lead celebrant Fr Joe McAuley)

HOMILY: Festival Mass, St Mary's Cathedral

Archbishop Cushley celebrated the annual Festival Mass at St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh yesterday (Sunday 21 August).

Among the congregation were the city's Lord Provost, Robert Aldridge, and the Very Rev. Colin Sinclair, former Moderator of the Church of Scotland.

In his Homily, the Archbishop highlighted the inspirational foundations of the Festival and said: "It is successful, not only when there are great names performing and lots of things to see and to do, but when our great city promotes the dignity and worth of us all, from the greatest to the least."


Homily of Archbishop Leo Cushley of St Andrews & Edinburgh, Festival Mass, St Mary’s Metropolitan Cathedral, Edinburgh , 21 August 2022

My dear friends,

A warm welcome to our Cathedral on the happy occasion of the 75th anniversary of the Edinburgh International Festival

In your name, I’m very pleased to welcome for the first time Councillor Robert Aldridge, the Right Honourable Lord Lieutenant and Lord Provost of the City of Edinburgh, a number of our city’s councillors, several distinguished representatives of the City’s Consular Corps, representatives of the Knights and Dames of the Order of Malta and of the Holy Sepulchre, the city’s High Constables, and other distinguished guests and friends.

In particular, I’d like to welcome my dear friend Very Rev. Colin Sinclair, former Moderator of the Church of Scotland.  Thank you for honouring us with your presence today.

As many of you will know by now, the scripture readings that we have just heard are part of a cycle read everywhere in the Catholic Church throughout the world every day, and do not indicate a choice on my part to make some point about politics or diplomacy or the concert of nations.

They’re simply the next readings up for the prayerful consideration of those at Mass today throughout the world. But, as always, in their own curious, providential way, they do give us something to think about, if we let them.  Every day’s a school day.  So, what does Isaiah or Jesus of Nazareth have to say to us about the 75th anniversary of the Edinburgh International Festival?

In the Gospel we have just heard, Jesus is asked by a stranger “how many” people will be saved.  In his reply, Jesus ignores the “how many” part of the question and instead replies with a look at the “how”.

So, how are people to be redeemed?  Well, Jesus says, the best way to find redemption is by taking the “narrow path” and entering by the “narrow gate”.  Whatever he meant, it doesn’t sound very easy or comfortable, because it makes all of us look at our lives and, if we’re honest, we easily find room for improvement.  But it’s not a reply that lumps us all together.

Elsewhere, in St John, Jesus calls himself the Way and the Gate. But here, it seems that we are all going to have to find our own path, we’re all going to have find the narrow gate that applies to us.  To every one of us, the greatest and the least.  We are individuals, with the same dignity and worth, it is true, with similar possibilities, but we will also have to find our own path through life, to what makes us completely human, and in harmony with our maker.

In one of his excellent books on the scriptures, the late Rabbi Jonathan Sachs quotes an old Jewish proverb which talks of the Mint of God.  Not the After Eight kind of mint, but the Royal Mint kind.  Imagine that God had a mint like the Royal Mint.  The Royal Mint produces coins that are absolutely identical to each other, in look, weight, feel, and value.  That, of course, is the point of a mint.

Now, imagine that God had a mint for minting human beings in his image and likeness.  We believe that we are created in the image and likeness of God; because we are like God, we have our dignity and worth; and that helps us to see why by extension human life is sacred.  But when the divine Mint creates a human being, that person is unique.

Any coin of the realm can replace any other coin of the same denomination.  But we who are minted in the divine Mint, in God’s image and likeness, with the same dignity and worth as Him and as each other, are utterly and completely unique.  We are irreplaceable.  There never was, and there never will be, another human being like you.  We are made in the image and likeness of God, but we are also utterly unique.

And this is one reason why the celebration of the human person, the human spirit, in a festival such as ours in Edinburgh, born at it was in the face of war with Nazi Germany and the tyranny of states, is so important.  From the greatest to the least, we all share this dignity; from the greatest to the least, we are all irreplaceable, utterly unique.

I was in Washington DC last week and a stranger, upon discovering I was from Edinburgh, started to talk to me enthusiastically about the Edinburgh International Festival.

It has gone from a modest idea proposed by the late Sir Rudolph Bing into a major contribution to the world of music, theatre and the arts.  A Jewish refugee from Nazi Germany, Bing wanted to create a celebration that was not only an antidote to the policies of extremist governments, but also one that would put the human person and the human spirit back at the centre of our world, our concerns and our efforts to better ourselves.

All of us, regardless of who or what we are, have imagination, we have spirit, we have a sense of right and wrong.  And above all, each of us is utterly unique, and worthy of respect, in spite of our personal frailties and shortcomings. In its own way, the Edinburgh International Festival is an extension and a consequence of that.  At its best, it aspires to be a festival of the dignity of the human person.

We’re entitled to take some civic pride in the Festival, but it is more significant than that because it started being about disarming the extremists and the nihilists; it was about putting the human person, the human spirit at the centre of what we do.  It was about denying ground to the extremists who don’t believe in the dignity and worth of human beings.

It was to contradict the bien pensants, those who “know better” than the rest of us, those who don’t really believe in humanity’s worth.  This is particularly important when we look back to the post-Nazi roots of this festival and forward to what is happening in places such as the Ukraine.

As we give thanks for the 75th anniversary of the Festival and for the way in which the city of Edinburgh has embraced the vision of Sir Rudolf Bing, we recall that the Festival is most successful when it is a celebration of the human person, and the human spirit; it is successful, not only when there are great names performing and lots of things to see and to do, but when our great city promotes the dignity and worth of us all, from the greatest to the least.

Have a happy Festival, and God bless you all!

August update

Find out about news & events in the Archdiocese in our August update. Read it here.

Get updates to your inbox by completing the subscribe box in the news section of this website here.

Sr Aelred honoured at Edinburgh University

A Religious Sister of Mercy has received an honorary degree for her dedication in helping the most vulnerable and marginalised in society.

Sister Aelred Timmins RSM was granted the title Doctor of the University, Honoris Causa, at a ceremony at Edinburgh University's McEwan Hall.

It was conferred for her work over 50 years helping those in need and leading the Homeless Project at St Catharine's Mercy Centre in Lauriston Gardens, which she established in 1993.

Sr Aelred received her award from acting vice-chancellor of Edinburgh University  Professor Dorothy Miell at a graduation ceremony on 11 July.

It now assists up to 200 people every day, including the homeless and those coming off various addictions. It offers meals, toilet facilities, advice on welfare and a place of refuge and calm.


Professor Enda Delaney, who nominated Sr Aelred for the award, said: "Around us in this beautiful city of Edinburgh, there are inequalities we see every day.

"There are a few individuals who don’t look the other way, and have devoted their lives to working with the people on the margins of society.

From left: Professor Dorothy Miell, Sr Aelred and Professor Enda Delaney, who nominated Sr Aelred for the award.

"Today we honour one of them—Sister Aelred Timmins. Her selfless championing of the poor, the marginalised, the homeless, asylum seekers, migrants, those recovering from addictions and indeed many others, is a shining example of how compassion and kindness can make the world a better place for everybody.

"Having come to know Sister Aelred, I can say how much she is a beacon of hope and the embodiment of faith in practice."


Born in Kilkenny, Ireland, Sr Aelred has spent most of her life in missionary work. After completing her noviciate in England, she came to Edinburgh in the early 1970s to work in primary education in West Pilton, including establishing support for families suffering from HIV and AIDS in the 1980s.

The Homeless Project provides food, facilities and a place of peace and repose to the vulnerable and marginalised.

For her work in establishing the Homeless Project she has received awards including the BBC Heart of Gold Award in 1994 and the Sir William Y. Darling Award for Good Citizenship from the City of Edinburgh in 2004.

Many dignitaries have visited the project such as Prince Charles in 2001 and the then President of Ireland Mary McAleese in 2007. The project has never had to appeal for volunteers nor seek donations -it is supported solely by the generosity of its helpers and benefactors.

The Degree of Doctor honoris causa (Dr h c) is awarded to those who have done outstanding work/public service to Edinburgh or Scotland.

To find out more about the homeless project visit

July update

Find out about news & events in the Archdiocese in our July update. Read it here.

Get updates to your inbox by completing the subscribe box in the news section of this website here.

EVENT: Join us for a Family Afternoon on 25 June

Families are invited to join us at the Gillis Centre in Edinburgh for a special event focusing on The Eucharist: Source of Family Love.

The day takes place on Saturday 25 June, 2-5pm and you can register on our Eventbrite page here (free event).

The day includes:

  • Separate sessions for adults and children.
  • Family prayer time in St Margaret's Chapel onsite.
  • Games/workshops led by the Servidora Sisters from Fife.

The garden of the Gillis Centre, at 100 Strathearn Road, is large and perfect for children to play in, so we hope the sun will shine!

Families with children of all ages are welcome to attend and there is free parking onsite. This event coincides with the 10th World Meeting of Families taking place in Rome.

Family Afternoon, Saturday 25 June, 2-5pm, Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Road, Edinburgh. Details and registration at Event organised by the Marriage & Families Commission.